Monday, January 14, 2008

Dear Mr. Pineda:

Thank you writing about changes to media ownership rules. I appreciate hearing from you.

The effects of allowing a smaller number of companies a larger share of the media market concerns me. Any loosening of media ownership rules could seriously impact both the structure of the media sector and the relative negotiating power of individual companies. I am concerned that deregulation will put more power into the hands of media conglomerates, which could lead to neglect of local programming, eliminate competition, and reduce diversity of programming in the broadcast industry.

I have introduced legislation with Senator Byron Dorgan (D-ND) which would force the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to postpone any changes to media ownership rules until it takes steps to promote the broadcast and carriage of local programming by broadcasters, and to increase independent women and minority ownership representation. It would also require the FCC to wait at least 90 days before voting on a proposed rule change and to provide at least 60 days for public comment on it.

Please know I pay close attention to all proposed changes to media ownership rules and I will do what I can to ensure a competitive, pro-consumer marketplace. If you have any further questions or comments, please do not hesitate to call my Washington, D.C. staff at (202) 224-3841. Best regards.

Sincerely yours,
Dianne Feinstein

United States Senator

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